Nvidia sues Qualcomm and Samsung over graphics patents

Samsung Galaxy Edge Image copyright AP
Image caption Nvidia said it was forced to take legal action after talks with Samsung broke down

Nvidia has launched legal action against Samsung and Qualcomm alleging both have made unauthorised use of its technology.

The complaint covers graphics processing technologies Nvidia says it owns via a wide patent portfolio.

The disputed technology is used in many Samsung devices, said Nvidia, which also wants gadgets using the technology to stop being sold.

Samsung said it would fight the legal claim. Qualcomm has yet to comment.

"They're using our technology for free in their devices today and they're shipping an enormous number of devices," said Jen-Hsun Huang, Nvidia chief executive, during a news conference.

The infringement complaint is the first ever made by Nvidia and has been filed with a court in Delaware from which it hopes to be awarded damages for unauthorised use. Nvidia owns thousands of patents covering its graphics technology but said it launched the legal action on the back of seven that were representative of its work.

In a statement, Nvidia said it had been forced to take legal action after months of talks with Samsung over use of its technology "made no progress".

In response, Samsung said: "Following a thorough review of the complaint, we will take all measures necessary against Nvidia's claims."

Nvidia has also lodged a complaint with the US International Trade Commission that rules on which devices can be shipped and sold in the US. It has also asked the ITC to block devices made using Arm and Imagination Technologies hardware that it claims are also using its patented technology. Neither Arm nor Imagination are named in the Delaware court papers.

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